tv The Cycle MSNBC October 24, 2013 3:00pm-4:00pm EDT
so you feel free. powerful sinus relief. sudafed. open up. we begin with breaking news here on "the cycle." moments ago the lockdown on millington naval base outside of memphis, tennessee, was lifted after a nearby shooting. at least two national guardsmen were shot. a u.s. military official tells nbc news that three national guardsmen got into a fight at the national guard armory near the base. that argument resulted in gunfire. the men began to fight and one pulled a gun, shooting one guardsman in the foot and the other in the leg. neither is a life-threatening injury, the official said. the alleged shooter was arrested by local and navy police. he is in custody. we will keep you posted if anything new breaks in this story. we turn now to the heated hearing on capitol hill today. lawmakers taking the folks behind the troubled obama care website to task for most of the day. still, more questions than
answers in the first congressional hearing with the men and women who designed the online exchanges. representatives from four of the largest contractors the government hired to bill the site defended their work. >> do you know anyone else at the table thought or made a recommendation not to go forward on october 1? >> that's a correct statement. >> i refer back to my earlier answer. we did not make a recommendation. we simply made everyone aware of the risks we saw. >> okay. >> no, we did not make a recommendation. >> we did not either. >> there are thousands of websites that carry far more traffic. amazon and ebay don't crash the week before christmas. >> when was the integrated system tested? >> during the last two weeks in september. >> we didn't see the full kind of integrated end-to-end system testing you're talking about. >> why not? >> until a couple days leading up to the launch. >> shouldn't we have had that? >> ideally, yes. >> we were testing up to the
time that the system went live. >> ideally, integrated testing would have occurred well before that date. >> how far in advance of a major website coming online? >> well, with enough time to correct flaws before they begin. >> what's the recommended industry standard for end-to-end tests before rolling out a major website like this? >> months would be nice. >> did you deliver the product you were contracted to build, ms. campbell? >> we have. >> for the -- >> did you deliver the product you were contracted -- >> yes. >> yes. >> wow. the contractors were not the only ones in the hot seat. democrat frank pallone turned up the heat on the republicans' ulterior motive on holding the hearing. >> the republicans don't have clean hands coming here. their effort, obviously, isn't to make this better but to use the website and the glitches as an excuse to defund or repeal
obama care. here we have my republican colleagues trying to scare everybody -- >> will the gentleman yield? >> no, i will not yield to this monkey court. >> as the higher ups bicker about who's to blame and the worker bees crack open their energy drinks and continue trying to fix the glitches, the white house says the individual mandate enrollment deadline is not february 15th but is march 31st. that means to avoid tax penalties, you must start the process by the end of march. we start with nbc's luke russert. luke, what is the response, what's the reaction today to these hearings on the hill? >> well, it depends who you talk to. democrats say this is a hearing that was needed, but the way in which the gop has gone about it is they're actively trying to persuade people not to enroll in the new health care exchanges. democrats -- and republicans say no, this is a needed thing to occur. we need to shed some light on what went wrong here and why this website has been crashing almost nonstop off and on since
its launch. obviously it's getting better, but it's had a horrific opening, it's safe to say. what i found interesting from watching this hearing was a few things. when you have these types of hearings, the question is where does the buck stop? you have these contractors and they're blaming each other. the contractors are all saying, well, you know what, we do what we're supposed to do, but we didn't get the proper oversight. the proper oversight did not come from a specific agency. what was that in this case? that was the centers for medicare and medicaid services. that's where they're placing the blame, saying we did our job, but it was that agency that was supposed to string all these things together and make the website better for the people and make it usable, more user friendly. it will be interesting to see next week when kathleen sebelius of hhs and cms have to go testify on capitol hill. that'll be where we really get answers for the government's involvement. as far as what the contractor have said, aside from blaming each other and saying there wasn't enough oversight on the government's part, their message has been, well, we would have liked to have had more testing.
we made the government aware of our concerns. you saw in the lead-in, we would have preferred to have months, not days. nevertheless, krystal, this is a problem we see off and on with government contracting. they walked away, we found out today, with $375 million between all of them. they got paid. their work is subpar. >> for a job well done, luke. >> we don't know where the blame goes. this just goes back to the contracting we've seen from the u.s. government over the years. we saw a lot of horrific contracting during the iraq war, horrific contracting before that. that's the big issue here. how come the government can never hold these contractors accountable or get it right? >> absolutely right. luke russert, much appreciated. >> take care. >> jonathan cohn is senior editor at "the new republic." we're going to dig into the details of the health care exchange itself, but i wanted to start with the bigger picture question, the more philosophical question. back in september before we even had the government shutdown and
the debt ceiling hostage situation, americans' faith and trust in government was already at near record lows, according to gallup. all three branches of government near record lows with the legislative branch unsurprisingly being at the lowest. i mean, doesn't such a botched rollout as this website just further undermine americans' trust that the federal government can do anything well? >> unquestionably. i think that's one of the real great losses here and why you hear a lot of liberals as upset as conservatives. this was a test case. can the federal government take on a complex task? and in this instance, i don't think it did a very good job. nobody i know thinks it did a very good job. there were management failures up and down the chain of command. as a result, we have a website that's very important to the functioning of the new health care law, and it doesn't work, or it's working very poorly. now, you know, there's time to
fix it. hopefully they will fix it. there are lots of things the government does right, but the next time conservatives say, hey, you know, we don't have faith in the government, look what happened with healthcare.gov, you're going to have to say, yeah, you know, in that instance, you're right, it did a lousy job. >> now, no surprise you have democrats speaking out against the website. first read said today one of the chief reasons why democrats won the fight over the shutdown was obviously the party's impressive unity. you had democrats all standing together, whether it was the white house, blue state members, or red state members. we're now seeing that same unity does not exist when it comes to the website. for example, you have senator joe manchin as one democrat who is drafting legislation to delay the first year of penalties to folks who don't have insurance. it's one thing for republicans to be fighting against this, but now having pressure from democrats, how does that up the heat, i guess, for the administration to make some necessary changes? >> right. well, you're going to see, i think, anxiety levels on the
democratic side of the aisle rise the longer this takes. on the other hand, you know, there's still some time. i think democrats will hold it together. i think democrat believe in this law. they believe in what this law is supposed to do. the problem is the website suspect letting people get access to this insurance they desperately need. let's fix the website. i think everyone's aware the republican motives here are not exactly pure. they're holding these hearings not because they want to fix obama care. they're holding these hearings because they want to get rid of obama care. so i think there's some patience there. you know, either the website has to be working within a few weeks or the administration has to come up with some other ways to make this work. there are the proverbial break the glass plans. there are work arounds, there are alternatives. >> you know, jonathan, there's two things going on. one, obviously, you have some problems with the website that we've been covering and need to
be fixed. you've got republicans, as you say, disingenuously attacking that. but there's a media piece here too. i think the media gravitates towards some simple stories. broken website is a very simple story to tell. the fact that 60% of the poorest americans are in states where john roberts created an escape hatch for republican governors to opt out of medicare despite 90% funding is a horror story to tell. we did a segment on it this week because we think it's important. there's that aspect. another hard part of this is something you wrote about. speak to the fact that at the state level we've seen that the most critical period for enrollment is not typically the period we're in right now but comes later. i know you had a chart on that. >> yeah, i mean, the media does gravitate to the easy, the quick story. now everybody is suddenly looking for these enrollment numbers. i think some people expect we should have a stock ticker running across the bottom of the screen every day. oh, someone signed up for obama
care. ten people signed up for obama care. that's not the way it works. if you look at massachusetts, which implemented a set of reforms just like these. it's really the best model we have. almost nobody signed up at first. people waited. it makes sense. >> we have your chart up on screen where people can see the big red part at the end is more later near the deadline, not what would be right now. >> right. i mean, why would you pay now for an insurance policy that doesn't start until january 1st? that's true if you have private insurance from an employer. ask a human resources benefits person at a company. when does everybody sign up for open enrollment? they do it on the last day. so this is one of the stories i think people need to keep in mind. don't get hung up on the enrollment numbers, whether they're good or bad, frankly. the rush will come towards the end, towards the last minute. the question is whether the system is reasonably functional, fully functional by that point. >> that's absolutely right. people are procrastinators by
nature. of course they're not going to be signing up right away. i wonder if the president at some level is saying, i wish we had done single payer after all. but i want to turn the corner and talk about something else the president is trying to push. immigration. he was up this morning talking about immigration, trying to drive the narrative more toward that. the business community is pressuring republicans to get on the page with the president on this because the farming industry, the restaurant industry, and the hospitality industries in particular see the value this could do as well as anybody who sees the value of allowing 11 million people to pay more in taxes and to spend more as consumers. the tremendous value to america. so what is the likelihood, do you think, that we're going to get comprehensive immigration reform, say, i don't know, pick an arbitrary deadline, before the cardinals win the world series. >> which hopefully will be a long time from now. >> i know you're a red sox fan. >> you're right. look, this is one of those you look at the fundamentals and
think this should have been ages ago. all the interest groups are lined up behind it. you know, democrats are willing to compromise. they've come to the table. the republicans, this is in their long-term interest. i know they've been told this by everybody. but if they don't get behind immigration reform, it's going to be a really long time before they win a presidential election. so you would think this would have happened already. >> that's totally true, but jonathan, as you well know, they've spent over a decade demagoguing against this. it's a little bit hard for them to do a 180 now that they see their electoral future is in trouble. >> right. so the answer is, i don't know when it's going to happen. it should happen. at some point i would imagine the pressure on speaker boehner, on the house republicans from their business groups, even from evangelical groups will become enough, it will become overwhelming. they'll look at their disapproval ratings. they'll look at those demographic numbers and dd, you know what, we need to bite the bullet and do this.
if you asked me, it would have been happened a year ago. i'm surprised it didn't happen already. if it didn't happen already, it's hard for me to say when it will happen. >> all right. well, we'll keep the hope and remain optimistic. jonathan, thank you very much. >> thanks for having me. up next, the website is not the only thing that has the white house under pressure today. some of america's closest allies are personally dialing up the president to ask, hey, are you spying on me? we'll be dialing up the spin as "the cycle" rolls on for thursday, october 24th. [ woman #1 ] why do i cook? ♪ because an empty pan is a blank canvas. ♪ [ woman #2 ] to share a moment. ♪ [ man #1 ] to remember my grandmother. [ woman #3 ] to show my love. ♪ [ woman #4 ] because life needs flavor. ♪ [ woman #5 ] to travel the world without leaving home. [ male announcer ] whatever the reason. whatever the dish. make it delicious with swanson. [ woman #1 ] that's why i cook.
no longer for your eyes only. this afternoon the u.s. ambassador is meeting with the german foreign minister to discuss allegations of the nsa monitoring of cell phones of chancellor angela merkel. merkel called the president herself yesterday demanding immediate clarification over the issue. according to the white house, president obama assured merkel that the u.s. is actually not monitoring and will not monitor her communications. notably, though, no word on whether they have monitoring in the past. it's just the latest in a series of questions from allies the u.s. has been forced to respond to as the result of documents leaked by former nsa contractor edward snowden. france's president wants the issue of u.s. spying brought up at an eu summit that started today. let's spin. first of all, for those who are outside of this world, which is pretty much everyone talking about this today, it's not a black and white world, right? i think it's easy to assume that
it is, our intelligence gathering. but it's a very gray world. i think we'd be naive to assume that this type of thing doesn't go on. we'd also be naive to assume our allies don't do the same thing to us. >> they do. >> they do, do the same thing to us. it's a very murky world. you're never going to have full transparency in a field where transparency actually works against you. maybe you could put out rules of the road for your allies, but then the question is, where do you draw that line? what constitutes that red line? is it any worse than having a spy sitting in a meeting? my reaction to these latest leaks is i was a bit frustrated. who does this benefit? edward snowden, i feel like it's more about him. if anything, it puts the trust among our allies at risk. that becomes very, very problematic. >> once when i was a kid i did something really bad and my dad took me aside and said it's not bad you did it, it's bad you got
caught. i think that's what we have going on here. it's really bad we got caught. >> wait, grandma told you that? >> absolutely. love her. god rest her soul. it's going to damage some relationships. if we weren't doing intel spying on people like this, angela merkel, jim jong-il, we would be derelict in our duties. that's why we have a cia. we have to know. germany in particular. we have to know what they're telling us publicly is what they believe privately so we can confidence in the eurozone. >> to your point of the problem isn't doing it but getting caught, one interesting aspect is apparently angela merkel hasn't had much to say about the nsa controversy until it was her own cell phone that she found out was being bugged. one reporter tweeted, the first time that merkel is showing some proper passion during the nsa
affair. so it's all fine when they're spying on someone else. suddenly when it's your cell phone they're listening to conversations on, it makes a difference. ari, i was curious from you. you've been strong in terms of transparency and reform of the nsa spying system. do you feel differently about edward snowden leaking documents about our own surveillance programs within the united states versus information about what we're doing with our allies overseas? do you feel differently about those things? >> yes. i mean, we expect the united states to lie to a lot of other countries as they go about their business of keeping us safe. espionage is itself generally a lie in the sense that it's a secret that if exposed you would continue to lie about it and not want them to know. that's why the "bourne" movies are so fun. what edward snowden has done is released a great amount of information. the problem with that style of
disclosure is we don't get the hierarchy. i think the nsa documents that have leaked about what we see in the united states as we know from president obama himself have already triggered some changes because we found out that they were abusing the patriot act in ways they didn't admit, spying on way more americans than they had indicated and without the normal legal requirements they should have been following. later we learned the fisa court had actually rejected some of this. all of that on the home front was problematic. the problem here with the disclosure, and even people like me who have been supported of the press' right to report on these things without going to jail, is we don't really need to know the details of the foreign espionage if it doesn't involve law breaking or malfeasance. one final thing to compare it. if we find out that they are abroad torturing people, we still need to know about that because it's illegal and violating our constitution. i'm not saying anything that happens abroad isn't our business, but there's nothing against u.s. law in doing
espionage abroad or conducting military operations legally authorized abroad. so i think the difference here is the gate keeper press, the times, nbc news would typically not run some of these stories if they were in sole possession of the material and didn't see anything wrong with it. that's the distinction. >> you're making an important distinction. what we do abroad is very important and valuable. spying on our own citizens, that's a lot different. >> that leads back to my question of who is this benefitting other than edward snowden? interesting conversation. up next, more news from deutschland. the bishop of bling makes an appearance in the news cycle. and enjoy the money while you got it. new signs the reckoning has finally arrived. [poof!] [clicks mouse] there's doughnuts in the conference room.
there's doughnuts in the conference room. automatic discounts the moment you sign up. congestion, for the smog. but there are a lot of people that do ride the bus. and now that the buses are running on natural gas, they don't throw out as much pollution into the air. so i feel good. i feel like i'm doing my part to help out the environment.
the national guard are being treated at local hospitals. one was shot in the leg, the other in the foot during an argument with the suspect. local agencies are on the scene. expect an update from investigators before 6:00 eastern. touching tribute before the start of game one of the world series last night as the red sox held a moment of silence for massachusetts teacher colleen ri ritzer, believed to have been killed by a student. after that, the sox took an early lead in the game. david ortiz was robbed of a grand slam by carlos beltran but later hit a two-run homer. sox went on to win the game 8-1, even though the red sox rolled it out, it was a big hit on tv, up 28% from last year's game one. game two is tonight. meanwhile, pope francis has temporarily expelled a german bishop dubbed the bishop of bling. he reportedly spend $42 million renovating his new home and office. what drove up the price tag of
the british shop's residence? $34,000 conference table and a $4 million chapel. wow. pope francis has urged the clergy to forego a life of opulence. the suspension re-enforces that message. the story that the internet has been buzzing about today. a new christian grey. 31-year-old irish actor jamie dornan replaces charlie hunnam, the "sons of anarchy" star who dropped out of the project two weeks ago. people might recognize him from "once upon a time" or possibly this calvin klein ad. i'll definitely be tuning into that when it's out. >> good stuff, abby. and from jamie dornan to jamie dimon on wall street. there is a tentative $13 billion settlement between jpmorgan and the justice department. we reported on it this week. it's one of several new promising signs that wall
street's day of reckoning may finally be near. here's another. a jury found bank of america liable for fraud by country wide linked to loans that it sold government backed mortgages to fannie and freddy. it's a major win for the u.s. government. a judge is going to determine the dollar figure bank of america will have to shell out. that's not all. the obama doj is closing in on a record-breaking resolution for an insider trading case against s.a.c. capital. the firm used illegal and inside information to become one of the most successful hedge funds in the entire world with 25% annual returns. the firm just announced it is closing its london office as it prepares to potentially plead guilty to criminal misconduct and surrender its outside trading portfolio. so is wall street's house of cards finally collapsing? joining us now, founder of the better banking project. she worked at the department of treasury under both the clinton and obama administrations.
thanks for coming back. >> great to be here. >> look, i'm excited about this as you might be able to hear because we have gone from a period of a tremendous feeling of the prosecutors being asleep at the wheel to now this whole list of prosecutions or coming settlements. what does it mean and is it going to change the way wall street does business? >> i do think the word of the week or month has been accountability. we're seeing government take a much bigger stance. they're going after individuals in certain cases, which is new. they're not settling on criminal charges, which is promising. all of those things are really good signs. now, it's probably maybe the trickle that will eventually bring us the change in terms of behavior. but i think we're seeing a lot of promising signs here. >> well, i'm hopeful if you think there's going to be a change in behavior because of this stuff, i mean, let's zero in on jpmorgan. what's the incentive to that company, to other companies to change their behavior when the
potential benefit from skirting the law is so much greater than the penalty? >> well, and that's another important point, toure. three years ago we were talking about a quote/unquote record settlement that goldman sachs did with the s.e.c. that was only $550 million. we're talking 20 times that amount. there's a difference between what the justice department can do and what the s.e.c. can do. this is almost their entire profit from last year. as they say in d.c., a billion here, a billion there. all the sudden it's starting to look like real money. you're starting to see slowly, admittedly, investors, shareholders, board members waking up and saying we need to start thinking about how we maybe do business differently. >> and there's still a frustration among many that we haven't seen any executives handcuffed. you know, the idea that -- how do you actually send a message, how do you punish someone, how do you set a standard unless you recognize there are going to be real consequences.
are there any prospects of that happening? >> you're right. a lot of people are frustrated they haven't seen anyone in jail. those cases are hard to prove. one thing that's really interesting a provision in dodd-frank allowed us to go after traders for what they're calling reckless behavior as opposed to intention market manipulation. if you do something extraordinarily bad and destabilizing the markets, they can bring penalties against you. it's kind of like the difference between murder and manslaughter, but it can be a really important element to reigning in bad behavior. >> one aspect of this jpmorgan settlement that i was reading with some confusion is the top line number is $13 billion, but a significant chunk of that is meant to be -- is actually potentially tax deductible. how does that work? >> there's a difference between penalties, restitution for investors and money that's going to help make homeowners whole again, give them a little bit of the share back. so certain pieces can be tax
deductible and certain pieces can't. it's going to wind up being a small portion. i don't think it's going to be as much as has been reported. the total hit to jpmorgan would still be north of $9 billion, which again is a lot of money. >> yeah, and susan, the prosecutors over at obama doj have dialed this up. another big force that has changed business as usual is judge racoff. tell us about that. >> absolutely. he's been very aggressive in pushing back. he actually rejected several settlements that the s.e.c. had put forward into court with bank of america and other banks for other provisions a year and two years ago and said, no, these penalties aren't enough or i'm not going to let this bank deny any wrongdoing and sort of walk away. so the bank of america case that was just tried -- bank of america is actually appealing that case. there was a jury decision against that bank. they're appealing it to judge racoff. there's no way he's going to let that one go. i think that he has, as you said, he's helped amp up the justice department. they've gotten much more
aggressive, even just in the past year, i would say. >> it's an important story in that interplay between him saying, hey, you can't just let wall street plead these agreements where they don't say they didn't anything wrong. they just write it off. and the doj listening. it's a better story than some of what we hear nowadays. thank you again. we'll see you again. >> great to be here. up next, the real political consequences for the shutdown shenaniga shenanigans. we have david wasserman with some numbers you have to see. life with crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis
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less than a third of the nation harbors favorable feelings toward the gop. 63% dislike them. that includes 38% who strongly dislike them. with that in mind, the cook political report is changing its early projections in 15 midterm house races. they're calling it the shutdown shift. that shift is all good news for democrats. for the first time, there are more red seats in play than the 17 seats they need to hold to remain in power. you can also look at it as dems needing to pick up 17 seats. but the dems are also defending ten seats in competitive races. here to sort all of this out for us is david wasserman, house editor of the cook political record. thanks for joining us. >> thanks, krystal. >> tell us what is behind the shift in the ratings of these seats. >> well, krystal, the irony of this is that the republicans are most responsible for the shutdown and are the least likely to face blowback from it. the republicans who are least responsible for the shutdown are the ones who are primarily in
these at-risk seats. we saw the reverse image in 2009 and 2010 when democrats who voted against health care reform and against cap and trade and all these precarious pieces of legislation ended up in political hot water because they were representing marginal districts. they got thrown out of office. that led to even more polarization. we could see the same thing happening in 2014 if -- and this is a huge if -- if republicans continue to pursue the kind of self-destructive political strategies in it the house that they have. >> so david, i wanted to run a theory by you. i've heard some arguing that, yes, republicans' ratings are very low, but that's because their own people are mad at them. that's not going to be as impactful in an election because ultimately those folks are republican so they're going to vote republican. i look at it a bit differently, though. in a midterm election, you have to get people energized, you have to get them to turn out. should republicans be scared that such a large chunk of self-identifying republicans are upset with the party right now?
>> they should be. and they should be worried about their own enthusiasm levels. don't think you're going to see republicans are by and large vote for democrats in 2014. >> but they may not show up. >> they may not show up. the independent voters are typically the ones who decide these midterms. republicans tend to have a structural advantage in midterm elections because it brings out an older and wider electorate. but in 2006 when independents voted for democrats by 18 points, democrats were able to take back the house. they were able to take back the senate. independents voted for 19 points for republicans in 2010. we saw the mirror image of that. right now republicans' numbers with independent voters are in the words of a democratic pollster six or seven beer goggles ugly. the question is whether we're really going to see that change over the course of the next couple months as the focus shifts back to obama care and away from the shutdown. >> yeah, and it is true that a lot of these guys are insulated. on the other hand, there are tea party members you point out on your list who won by 52%, a big
popular tea party and libertarian figure, but he's gone from solid "r" to likely "r." we've seen some reporting at home that he's in trouble. yet, at this moment in time, democrats don't have a challenger to him. >> well, you know what's interesting about his district is he's actually in trouble because he's getting a challenge from the mainstream republican faction in grand rapids who's running a primary against him. if that disintegrates, it's not unimaginable democrats could be competitive there. but what we're seeing across a broad array of districts is that these republicans are not handling the shutdown as well as they could be back home. in particular, districts like, for example, lee terry's in omaha, nebraska, he told a local newspaper that dang straight he was going to take congressional pay during the shutdown because he's got a nice house and a kid in college. that's a recipe for political disaster. actually, a democratic omaha
city councilman changed his mind after initially saying he wasn't going to run for congress. now he's in the race. he's the democrats' poster child for the impact of the shutdown on a district-by-district basis. >> dave, i know it's fun and exciting in democratic circles to say we're going to take the house in 2014 because the shutdown is screwing them up. i don't buy that at all. i've read you and charlie writing about this. even with the shutdown shift, it's still going to be extremely difficult for democrats to take this over. you talk about voter amnesia, you talk about obama care, the failing rollout, pushing back some of that thing. you've written about, or larry has written about some of this pain is going to be enacted in the senate and not in the house. let's dig into one of the races that could be a bell weather race. michigan's seventh district. tim walberg was tea party before there was tea party. it's a district that went romney 51%. it's a really purple district, could go either way. what do you think about that
district, and what do you think about the prospect of that and others as a sort of bell weather for where we're going to be? >> that's a great question. south-central michigan. in fact, there's a county in south-central michigan that's been so volatile in the last few elections it's been represented by five different congressmen in the last ten years. but tim walberg is a fire and brimstone conservative who's far more conservative than that district. that district tends to lean perhaps three points to the right, but it's by no means the kind of club for growth orrer it taj action type district where other type republicans end to thrive in. so pam burns is a democratic state rep who's running against tim walberg and has garnered a little bit of support in michigan and in d.c. we'll see what she's able to do. but keep in mind that democrats like her have to also distance themselves from their own party's brand, which is also bad. >> we've been debating this an awful lot at "the cycle" office.
toure is convinced that no matter what happens between now and the midterms, there's no plausible way republicans can lose the house. >> what do you mean no matter what happens? i mean, a meteor could hit and destroy some voters, and that would change everything. it's not impotential, impossible. >> but rahm emanuel eluded to this, talking about the gerrymandered map as it looks today. he said, this is a map republicans designed nationwide. if we want to win it back, we've got to be able to pick the lock. you guys have pointed out a few metrics that we should be focusing on between now and the midterms that could potentially shift things around, you know, whether that be the presidential approval rating, economic confidence for the party's favorability ratings. what in your mind has to happen for us to unlock this lock that rahm emanuel is referring to? >> well, house minority whip steny hoyer told us in the earlier part of the year that even if democrats couldn't win the house, republicans could
lose it. i think that's absolutely appropriate to think about right now. republicans could continue on the same path that they've been down next january and february when we're talking about another debt limit increase and another continuing resolution. if they're persisting in a strategy to appease the base that has no real hope of impacting policy, then they're headed down a road for electoral disaster. i think republicans probably need to lose the national house vote by about 6.8 votes to lose the whole house, and that's still a mountain for democrats to climb. but it's not impossible. we've seen waves of that size in recent years. >> david wasserman, you have warmed my little democratic heart today. thank you so much. >> thanks very much. >> of course. if you're looking for additional information, "the cycle's" littlest pundit, my daughter elle la, has her own shutdown spin. and the end of the shutdown means panda cam is back. she makes the link from pandas
to immigration. what if that panda who was here and didn't have their paperwork, what if they got sick? would we take care of them? >> yes, we should take care. we could get some money from some others to help that panda. >> i think that's a good idea. >> and start a website that says help pandas get some -- get money. >> ella is a brilliant businesswoman. if you go to helppandasgetmoney.com, you'll be redirected to "the cycle's" home page. there's also a link on our facebook page. check it out. up next, if panda cam and my adorable daughter are not enough to make you smile, a harvard-trained researcher who has traveled the world for the keys to happiness and success, tells us all how to make our lives and our workplaces a little brighter starting today.
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hey, buddy. if you want to be happy, consider reading our next guest's book "before happiness," which says happiness is a voluntary habit and we should see stress we should see stress as a challenge and not a threat. this comes from extensive research and work in 51 countries. joining us is shawn acore will help you become a positive genius. probably the happiest guy on the planet oovpts. define what is a positive genius? >> positive genius is someone who regardless of what's going on with the changes in the political or economic landscape can continually act text a positive reality in which they believe their behavior matters if they link up with other people. even though their environment may not be great, it turns out they're able to see ways in which they can make positive changes, they can see changes they can make in other people's lives. it's not just about creating happiness for themselves, but spreading it to other people as well. >> one of the things you point
to is the fact we can choose our own happiness. too often today, with millennials, it seems that they feel they're a victim, like the world is out to get them. how much is it about setting the expectations? >> you're so right. a lot of people in the world believe their happiness is just about their genes or their environment. i can't be happy because this is how i was borng, i can't be happy because this is what's going on in the world right now. >> and i can't change it. >> that's not what the science says at all. the science shows that the average person doesn't fight their genes. when we keep doing this research, we keep finding genes are incredibly important. you can find people dramatically able to change their lives based on changing their habits or mindset. only 10% of our long-term levels of happiness are predicted by the outside world. 95% is how the brain processes the world. >> you've been to over 50 countries. when you go around the world,
what is the answer to the question what is happiness? >> it's different for everyone. i think part of the goal of this research is to redefine what happiness is. if it's just pleasure, it's very short lived. what we want to create is in the midst of the ups and downs in life, how do we create joy moving toward our potential. you mentioned the millennials feel like they're victims. they don't realize happiness is a choice and requires us to continue to work towards that goal. happiness is not just something that happens to us based upon changes that occur. >> we make happiness happen to our environment. excellent stuff. great book, great with it. shawn achor. up next, what the obama care rollout has in common with the st. louis cardinals who didn't know that the world series started last night! >> on the mound adam wayne wright says everybody stay away
during the government shutdown and debt ceiling debacle republicans fantasized about the alternate headlines they could have if their party was not engaging in some defund obama care quest. now it's time we imagined our own alternate reality with headlines like "obama care site gets rave reviews," "democrats bolster 2014 changes with successful obama care launch" and "millions of previously uninsured now have health care insurance." which failures am i talking about?
>> give it to us straight dot gov, how bad is it? >> according to a poll by the associated press fewer than one in teen people who tried to sign up were actually able to complete the process. that's a success rate of less than 10%. >> less than 10%. how bad is that? 20% is the number of dentists who recommend sugared gum. now, if you've been watching our show, you know i'm pretty angry about thoepz failures. on yesterday's show "washington post" columnist matt miller told me to chill out. i'm sorry, i can't and i won't chill out. here's the problem, republicans, of course, have been lying to americans about the affordable care act telling them it's a train wreck, saying this president is a bystander to his own presidency, arguing that the federal government is incompetent and can't work. now they've got all kinds of evidence to back up their malicious and destructive claims. so that's one piece of why, sorry, matt, i can't chill.
but what i'm really angry about here is the fact that for millions the success of this law is literally a matter of life or death. as outraged as we are when republicans try to sabotage it, we should be equally outraged when our own side materially makes its success less likely. yes, before you send your tweets, i know the website is not the entirety of the affordable care act. but to say it's just a website is also a huge understatement. this is the first direct experience that millions of americans will have with obama care. this is the critical entry point to president obama's signature achievement, an achievement we've marched for, rallied for and fought supreme court cases and elections over. i just cannot understand how something so mission critical could have turned out so poorly. look, i'm not trying to engage in hyperbole here. we've taken a giant risk, an unnecessary risk with a dismal
failure of a rollout and there's really no excuse. after all, we are supposed to be the party that knows how to do good government. and for all those states like texas that we wanted to convince to go forward with the medicaid expansion piece of this, well, good luck with that now. frankly, i'm a little disappointed in my left-leaning friends for not being more honest here. we're not propagandists, we're not like them. we don't insulate ourselves into our own media bubble impervious to the reality around us. we're supposed to be the one whose tell it straight even when it's not convenient. to those who say by pointing owl the failing of the website we're giving comfort to the gop propagandists, i would say this. we are not the ones giving comfort to the propagandists, the failing website is what has given them comfort. remember, these are people who will spend months reporting on an imagined $18 muffin. they don't need our he.